CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY: The Commission on Human Rights (CHR) in Northern Mindanao has started investigating the circumstances surrounding a shootout where City Mayor Reynaldo “Aldong” Parojinog and 15 others were killed.
Lawyer Jean Abrena, the CHR regional director in Northern Mindanao, said that the commission has sent letters requesting the provincial police office in Misamis Occidental and the city police office in Ozamiz City for detailed reports about the incident.
“Part of the protocol was to ask the provincial police office and the city police office to provide the CHR copies of the six search warrants issued by the Quezon City regional trial court,” Abrena told the local media Thursday.
She said that the CHR has requested for the operation report, spot report, the autopsy and the forensic report conducted by the Scene of the Crime Office (SOCO) on the victims and the scene where the incident took place.
Abrena said the CHR regional office also requested the CHR Central Office in Manila to send forensic experts who would conduct a separate analysis and for the re-autopsy of the bodies of the victims.
She said that the commissions would compare its findings with the SOCO and other investigating bodies.
The Manila Times learned that the Regional Internal Affairs Services (RIAS) in Northern Mindanao has also started to investigate the Ozamiz incident that killed the Mayor Parojinog, his wife Susan, brother provincial board member Octavio Parojinog, Jr. sister Mona Parojinog, nephew Daryl Parojinog and 11 others.
One of the objectives of the CHR would be to determine whether the serving of the search warrants was done according to legal procedures and to find out about whether the law enforcers have abused their authority in the process, Abrena said.
She said that the search warrant was supposedly served only during the day, unless the issuing court indicated that the warrant could be served anytime of the day and night for some reasons.
Abrena said that the commission would also gather as many affidavits from possible witnesses of the incident.
A source told The Manila Times that the neighbors of the Parojinogs and the families of the civilian volunteers who were killed during the serving of the warrants were willing to execute affidavits and testify in court.
It was unfortunate, however, that the only living witness who was wounded and recovered in the house of Mayor Parojinog in Barangay San Roque, died while undergoing treatment in a hospital in Ozamiz City Tuesday afternoon.
Abrena said that the commission would only file a case against the police personnel involved if the private lawyers of the Parojinogs and the aggrieved parties would fail to file cases in court.